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Effectiveness of Religious Spiritual Integrated Therapy (RSIT) for Reduction of Death Distress in Iranian Outpatients with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Mahboubeh Dadfar, Merhardad Kazemzadeh Atoofi and Atiye Rezaei


Published: 2023/03/01


The aim of the study was to investigate the effectiveness of religious spiritual integrated therapy (RSIT) to reduce death distress. This was a randomized clinical trial study. A total sample of 30 Iranian outpatients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) was recruited from clinics of the School of Behavioral Sciences and Mental Health affiliated with Iran University of Medical Sciences in Tehran. They were randomly divided into two equally-sized groups which completed scales of death anxiety, death obsession, and death depression (DAS, DOS, and DDS). The RSIT was found to be effective in reducing death distress and promoting mental health of GAD patients. It is concluded that the integration of spirituality into psychotherapy should be considered for treatment of such patients. Taking interview-based history of religious and spiritual involvement of the patients is recommended as it is a possible determinant of the effectiveness of the RSIT and similar interventions. Future research should focus on whether and how the RSIT should be adapted to culture, religion, education, and gender of GAD patients. Keywords: Religious spiritual integrated therapy, Death anxiety, Death obsession, Death depression, GAD, Iran

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